Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving Grants Program

Published on AidPage by IDILOGIC on Jun 24, 2005

Administered by:

US Federal Government Agency (see all agencies)
Environmental Protection Agency , Office of Environmental Justice
CFDA #: 66.306

Purpose of this program:

The purpose of this program is to award grants to eligible community-based organizations in order for those organizations to develop projects which demonstrate the utility of the Federal Interagency Working Group Model on Collaborative Problem-Solving. EPA, through the OEJ, will provide financial assistance to those community-based organizations who wish to engage in capacity-building initiatives, and also constructive engagement and collaborative problem-solving to seek viable solutions for their community's environmental and/or public health issues. Funding Priority: The purpose of this grant program is to award grants to affected non-profit community-based organizations who are working on constructive engagement and collaborative problem-solving to address environmental and/or public health concerns in their communities or who are planning on doing so. A key starting point is the community's involvement in clearly formulating and articulating a goal to be accomplished, (e.g., the goal of the project might be the establishment of a health clinic or medical screening program; or the replacement of diesel buses with clean fuel buses). This may entail outreach and education to affected community residents and other stakeholders. Collaborative problem-solving involves an understanding of the need to seek other partners such as industry, Federal, state and local governments, academia, and environmental organizations to address the community's environmental and/or public health concerns. It involves developing strategic partnerships, by including all organizations which can play a role in addressing the problems. Collaborative problem-solving involves a well designed and strategic plan to sustain the partnership and to work toward addressing the environmental and/or public health issues.

Possible uses and use restrictions...

Grant funds shall be used to support projects, programs or activities that promote environmental justice. The purpose, goals, and general procedures and guidelines for applying for the Environmental Justice Collaborative Problem-Solving grants will be announced each year in a solicitation. OEJ's Environmental Justice CPS grants seek to accomplish a strategically defined set of objectives that address one or more environmental and/or public health issues by focusing on two key areas (e.g., capacity-building of the community residents, and forming collaborative partnerships). Any affected community-based organization, working on or planing to carry out projects to address local environmental and/or public health concerns, with non-profit status either demonstrated through designation by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) organization or incorporated as a non-profit under applicable state law may submit an application during the period of the solicitation. All awards will be made in the form of a grant in the amount of $100,000.00 to be used over a three-year period. To be eligible, you must be an affected local community-based organization. No funds made available for this program shall be used for the acquisition of real property (including building) or the construction or substantial modification of any building. Grant funds may not be used for lobbying or underwriting legal actions, including the preparation of court testimony and hiring of expert witnesses.

Who is eligible to apply...

Affected community-based grassroots organizations. A local community-based organization is defined for this cooperative agreement program as an entity/organization that is: (1) at the most basic level of the organizational hierarchy such as a grassroots group/neighborhood organization that is not affiliated with a larger national, regional or state organization; (2) located in the same area as the environmental and/or public health problem that is described in the application and where the residents of the affected community reside; (3) focused primarily on addressing the environmental and/or public health problems of the residents of the affected community; and (4) comprised primarily of members of the affected community. Affected? is defined as being in the locale which is influenced or altered by the environmental and/or public health problem. An applicant must meet all of the above requirements and must explain how its organization fits each of those requirements in the application. An applicant must be a nonprofit organization as demonstrated through designation by the Internal Revenue Service as a Section 501 (c)(3) organization or through incorporation as a nonprofit organization under applicable state law in order to receive Federal funds under this cooperative agreement program. The following entities are not eligible to receive Federal funds under this cooperative agreement program: individuals; universities; state governments; local governments; tribal governments; water districts or similar entities; large non-governmental organizations such as national environmental groups; environmental justice networks; and organizations that are not located in the affected communities where the projects are found.

Eligible Applicant Categories:
Eligible Functional Categories:

Costs will be determined in accordance with OMB Circular No. A-122 for nonprofit organizations.

Note:This is a brief description of the credentials or documentation required prior to, or along with, an application for assistance.

About this section:

This section indicates who can apply to the Federal government for assistance and the criteria the potential applicant must satisfy. For example, individuals may be eligible for research grants, and the criteria to be satisfied may be that they have a professional or scientific degree, 3 years of research experience, and be a citizen of the United States. Universities, medical schools, hospitals, or State and local governments may also be eligible. Where State governments are eligible, the type of State agency will be indicated (State welfare agency or State agency on aging) and the criteria that they must satisfy.

Certain federal programs (e.g., the Pell Grant program which provides grants to students) involve intermediate levels of application processing, i.e., applications are transmitted through colleges or universities that are neither the direct applicant nor the ultimate beneficiary. For these programs, the criteria that the intermediaries must satisfy are also indicated, along with intermediaries who are not eligible.

How to apply...

Application Procedure:

Potential applicants are to submit their original application package plus 2 copies to the Office of Environmental Justice, Washington, DC 20460 by September 30, 2005.

Note: Each program will indicate whether applications are to be submitted to the Federal headquarters, regional or local office, or to a State or local government office.

Award Procedure:

Applications must be submitted to the Office of Environmental Justice by the specified date in order to be eligible. This program is subject to the provisions of OMB Circular Nos. A-102 and A-110.

Note: Grant payments may be made by a letter of credit, advance by Treasury check, or reimbursement by Treasury check. Awards may be made by the headquarters office directly to the applicant, an agency field office, a regional office, or by an authorized county office. The assistance may pass through the initial applicant for further distribution by intermediate level applicants to groups or individuals in the private sector.

Deadlines and process...


Applicants selected for award will be notified and may be requested to furnish additional information, if needed. For fiscal year 2005 the postmark must be by September 30, 2005.

Note: When available, this section indicates the deadlines for applications to the funding agency which will be stated in terms of the date(s) or between what dates the application should be received. When not available, applicants should contact the funding agency for deadline information.

Range of Approval/Disapproval Time

About 150 days.

Preapplication Coordination

Complete Applications as described in the solicitation, will include SF-424, SF-424A and B, 3 copies of Workplan, Detailed Itemized Budget, Certification Regarding Lobbying, Preaward Compliance Review Report, Biographical Sketches of Key Personnel, Quality Assurance Statement (if necessary) must be submitted to the EPA Office of Environmental Justice, Washington D.C. This program is eligible for coverage under E.O. 12372, "Intergovernmental Review of Federal Programs." An applicant should consult the office or officials designed as the single point of contact in his or her State for more information on the process the State requires to be followed in applying for assistance, if the State has selected the program for review.

Note: This section indicates whether any prior coordination or approval is required with governmental or nongovernmental units prior to the submission of a formal application to the federal funding agency.


Appeals are subject to the provisions of 40 CFR Part 31, Subpart F and 40 CFR Part 30.63.

Note: In some cases, there are no provisions for appeal. Where applicable, this section discusses appeal procedures or allowable rework time for resubmission of applications to be processed by the funding agency. Appeal procedures vary with individual programs and are either listed in this section or applicants are referred to appeal procedures documented in the relevant Code of Federal Regulations (CFR).


These are one time awards of $100,000 each to be completed over the course of three years.

Note: In some instances, renewal procedures may be the same as for the application procedure, e.g., for projects of a non-continuing nature renewals will be treated as new, competing applications; for projects of an ongoing nature, renewals may be given annually.

Who can benefit...

Non-Profit Community Groups as described in 081 above.

About this section:

This section lists the ultimate beneficiaries of a program, the criteria they must satisfy and who specifically is not eligible. The applicant and beneficiary will generally be the same for programs that provide assistance directly from a Federal agency. However, financial assistance that passes through State or local governments will have different applicants and beneficiaries since the assistance is transmitted to private sector beneficiaries who are not obligated to request or apply for the assistance.

What types of assistance...

How much financial aid...

Range and Average of Financial Assistance

Not applicable.

Note: This section lists the representative range (smallest to largest) of the amount of financial assistance available. These figures are based upon funds awarded in the past fiscal year and the current fiscal year to date. Also indicated is an approximate average amount of awards which were made in the past and current fiscal years.


FY 03 $1,500,000; FY 04 $1,500,000; and FY 05 est $1,500,000.

Note: The dollar amounts listed in this section represent obligations for the past fiscal year (PY), estimates for the current fiscal year (CY), and estimates for the budget fiscal year (BY) as reported by the Federal agencies. Obligations for non-financial assistance programs indicate the administrative expenses involved in the operation of a program.

Account Identification


Note: Note: This 11-digit budget account identification code represents the account which funds a particular program. This code should be consistent with the code given for the program area as specified in Appendix III of the Budget of the United States Government.

Examples of funded projects...

30 projects have been awarded under this program. Visit web site under 153 above for examples of successful projects.

About this section

This section indicates the different types of projects which have been funded in the past. Only projects funded under Project Grants or Direct Payments for Specified Use should be listed here. The examples give potential applicants an idea of the types of projects that may be accepted for funding. The agency should list at least five examples of the most recently funded projects.

Program accomplishments...

New Program.

Criteria for selecting proposals...

EPA will determine if the applicant meets specific administrative and management requirements. EPA will review a description of the applicant's history, goals, and plans for using the assistance funds. Factors that are particularly important in this evaluation process include: (1) The applicant must qualify as an ?affected community-based organization? as described in 081 above; (2) Whether or not the applicant group is designated by the Internal Revenue Service as a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization or incorporated as a non-profit under applicable state law; (3) The degree to which the applicant groups' members health and economic well-being of the environment are adversely affected by environmental hazardous exposure; (4) The applicant's ability to inform others in the community of the information gathered; (5) Broad representation of affected groups and individuals in the community; (6) The applicant's ability to manage the grant in compliance with EPA grant regulations; In general, the applicant must demonstrate that it is aware of the time commitment, resources, and dedication needed to successfully manage a grant.

Assistance considerations...

Length and Time Phasing of Assistance

The project grants will be awarded for a 3 year project period. Activities must be completed within the time frame of the project's budget period.

Formula and Matching Requirements


A formula may be based on population, per capita income, and other statistical factors. Applicants are informed whether there are any matching requirements to be met when participating in the cost of a project. In general, the matching share represents that portion of the project costs not borne by the Federal government. Attachment F of OMB Circular No. A-102 (Office of Management and Budget) sets forth the criteria and procedures for the evaluation of matching share requirements which may be cash or in-kind contributions made by State and local governments or other agencies, institutions, private organizations, or individuals to satisfy matching requirements of Federal grants or loans.

Cash contributions represent the grantees' cash outlay, including the outlay of money contributed to the grantee by other public agencies, institutions, private organizations, or individuals. When authorized by Federal regulation, Federal funds received from other grants may be considered as the grantees' cash contribution.

In-kind contributions represent the value of noncash contributions provided by the grantee, other public agencies and institutions, private organizations or individuals. In-kind contributions may consist of charges for real property and equipment, and value of goods and services directly benefiting and specifically identifiable to the grant program. When authorized by Federal legislation, property purchased with Federal funds may be considered as grantees' in-kind contribution.

Maintenance of effort (MOE) is a requirement contained in certain legislation, regulations, or administrative policies stating that a grantee must maintain a specified level of financial effort in a specific area in order to receive Federal grant funds, and that the Federal grant funds may be used only to supplement, not supplant, the level of grantee funds.

Post assistance requirements...


Recipients of grants are expected to participate in monthly conference calls, submit quarterly status reports, annual reports, and a final report for EPA approval prior to receipt of the balance of grant funds.

Note: This section indicates whether program reports, expenditure reports, cash reports or performance monitoring are required by the Federal funding agency, and specifies at what time intervals (monthly, annually, etc.) this must be accomplished.


Grants and cooperative agreements are subject to inspections and audits by the Comptroller General of the United States, the EPA Office of Inspector General, other EPA staff or any authorized representative of the Federal government. Reviews by the EPA Project Officer and the Grants Specialist may occur each year. In accordance with the provisions of OMB Circular No. A-133 (Revised, June 27, 2003), "Audits of States, Local Governments, and Non-Profit Organizations, non-federal entities that expend $300,000 ($500,000 for fiscal years ending after December 31, 2003) or more in a year in Federal awards shall have a single or a program-specific audit conducted for that year. Non-federal entities that expend less than $300,000 ($500,000 for fiscal years ending after December 31, 2003) a year in Federal awards are exempt from Federal audit requirements for that year, except as noted in OMB Circular No A-133.

Note: This section discusses audits required by the Federal agency. The procedures and requirements for State and local governments and nonprofit entities are set forth in OMB Circular No. A-133. These requirements pertain to awards made within the respective State's fiscal year - not the Federal fiscal year, as some State and local governments may use the calendar year or other variation of time span designated as the fiscal year period, rather than that commonly known as the Federal fiscal year (from October 1st through September 30th).


Financial records, including all documents to support entries on accounting records and to substantiate changes to each assistance agreement must be kept available to personnel authorized to examine EPA assistance accounts. All records must be maintained until the expiration of three years from the date of submission of the Financial Status Report. If questions still remain, such as those raised as the result of an audit, related records should be retained until the matter is completely resolved.

Note: This section indicates the record retention requirements and the type of records the Federal agency may require. Not included are the normally imposed requirements of the General Accounting Office. For programs falling under the purview of OMB Circular No. A-102, record retention is set forth in Attachment C. For other programs, record retention is governed by the funding agency's requirements.



Clean Water Act, Section 104(b)(3); Safe Drinking Water Act, Section 1442(c)(3); Solid Waste Disposal Act, Section 8001(a); Clean Air Act, Section 103(b)(3); Toxic Substances Control Act, Section 10(a); Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, Section 20(a); Marine Protection, Research, and Sanctuaries Act, Section 203.

Note: This section lists the legal authority upon which a program is based (acts, amendments to acts, Public Law numbers, titles, sections, Statute Codes, citations to the U.S. Code, Executive Orders, Presidential Reorganization Plans, and Memoranda from an agency head).

Regulations, Guidelines, And Literature

40 CFR Parts 7, 12, 29, 30, 31, 32, 32(F), 33; and Public Law 101-619.

Contact information...

Web Sites
Regional Or Local Office

Contact the appropriate EPA Regional Office listed in Additional Contact Information - FMR Help.

Note: This section lists the agency contact person, address and telephone number of the Federal Regional or Local Office(s) to be contacted for detailed information regarding a program such as: (1) current availability of funds and the likelihood of receiving assistance within a given period; (2) pre-application and application forms required; (3) whether a pre-application conference is recommended; (4) assistance available in preparation of applications; (5) whether funding decisions are made at the headquarters, regional or local level; (6) application renewal procedures (including continuations and supplementals) or appeal procedures for rejected applications; and (7) recently published program guidelines and material. However, for most federal programs, this section will instruct the reader to consult the so-called Appendix IV of the Catalog due to the large volume of Regional and Local Office Contacts for most agencies. This information is provided in Additional Contact Information (see below).

Headquarters Office

Director, Office of Environmental Justice, (2201A), Environmental Protection Agency, 1200 Pennsylvania Ave., NW., Washington, DC 20460. Telephone: (202) 564-2515. Environmental Justice Hotline: 1-800-962-6215.

Note: This section lists names and addresses of the office at the headquarters level with direct operational responsibility for managing a program. A telephone number is provided in cases where a Regional or Local Office is not normally able to answer detailed inquiries concerning a program. Also listed are the name(s) and telephone number(s) of the information contact person(s) who can provide additional program information to applicants.

Additional Contact Information (Appendix IV)

Due to the large volume of regional and local office contacts for most agencies, full contact information is also provided separately here in a PDF format: